What does paternalism mean?

Definitions for paternalism
pəˈtɜr nlˌɪz əmpa·ter·nal·ism

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word paternalism.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. paternalismnoun

    the attitude (of a person or a government) that subordinates should be controlled in a fatherly way for their own good


  1. paternalismnoun

    the treatment of people in a fatherly manner, especially by caring for them but sometimes being stern with them


  1. paternalism

    Paternalism refers to the behavior, activity or action, usually by individuals in positions of authority, of limiting the freedom or responsibilities of others in their supposed best interest, much like a parent might do for a child. It often takes the form of laws, regulations, or social norms that restrict personal decisions, generally arguing that such restrictions are beneficial for the person or group in question.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Paternalismnoun

    the theory or practice of paternal government. See Paternal government, under Paternal


  1. Paternalism

    Paternalism is behavior, by a person, organization or state, which limits some person or group's liberty or autonomy for their own good. Paternalism can also imply that the behavior is against or regardless of the will of a person, or also that the behavior expresses an attitude of superiority. The word paternalism is from the Latin pater for father, though paternalism should be distinguished from patriarchy. Paternalism is sometimes thought appropriate towards children and paternalism towards adults is sometimes thought to treat them as if they were children. Examples of paternalism include laws requiring the use of motorcycle helmets, a parent forbidding their children to engage in dangerous activities, and a psychiatrist confiscating sharp objects from someone who is suicidally depressed.

U.S. National Library of Medicine

  1. Paternalism

    Interference with the FREEDOM or PERSONAL AUTONOMY of another person, with justifications referring to the promotion of the person's good or the prevention of harm to the person. (from Cambridge Dictionary of Philosophy, 1995); more generally, not allowing a person to make decisions on his or her own behalf.

Matched Categories

Anagrams for paternalism »

  1. parliaments

  2. parentalism

How to pronounce paternalism?

How to say paternalism in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of paternalism in Chaldean Numerology is: 1

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of paternalism in Pythagorean Numerology is: 2

Examples of paternalism in a Sentence

  1. Grover Cleveland:

    The lessons of paternalism ought to be unlearned and the better lesson taught that while the people should patriotically and cheerfully support their Government its functions do not include the support of the people.

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Translations for paternalism

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"paternalism." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 28 May 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/paternalism>.

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    immoderately desirous of acquiring e.g. wealth
    A handsome
    B greedy
    C alternate
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